Every website loves organic traffic because it is a real payout for all the hard work invested in Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Quality backlinks are the key to attaining high rankings and getting all the organic traffic that you desire for your website. But do you realize what really makes quality backlinks? What are the backlink factors that can actually decide the fate of your website in terms of rankings?
Besides great content and niche relevance, smart usage of anchor text is something that Google prioritizes for determining the value of your backlinks from the ranking perspective. You cannot, therefore, ignore the significance of creating SEO-friendly anchor texts for your backlinks. Here are some tips that can help you in creating such anchor texts that are capable of fetching the best results for your SEO strategy.
When it comes to defining “SEO-friendly” in this context, relevance is the key. It refers to the anchor texts which tell the users and search engines what the landing page is all about. Simply speaking, an anchor text that reveals the theme and intent of the landing page to the user is regarded as a relevant one. This indicates your intention to deliver the best user experience, which is something that Google prioritizes while allocating search rankings.
Ensure that it is natural
A natural and well-optimized anchor text is considered the best from the SEO perspective. Anything that is spammy and keyword-based, on the other hand, is a red flag to Google. It is an indication of manipulation with backlinks and can cause something as serious as a penalty for your website. Make sure that your anchor text is natural, which is best done by using it contextually within the backlink. Not only does Google like it, but there are greater chances that the user will click the link and land on your website.
Keep it short and simple
Another rule that you must follow for ensuring SEO-friendliness for your anchor text is keeping them short and simple, rather than using long sentences. If you take the latter approach, the piece is not user-friendly because the user needs to read through the entire phrase to comprehend your intent. Anything less than six words is considered ideal when it comes to creating a result-oriented anchor text strategy.
Use important words upfront
While creating anchor text, stick to using the important words first and reserve the less important ones later in the text. Humans are likely to process the information from left to right, which means that they will probably pay more attention to the words that appear first in a key phrase. So make sure that you follow this rule while creating anchor text that prioritizes SEO.
Avoid keywords stuffing completely
The biggest mistake that you can make with anchor text is to overuse them to the extent of keyword stuffing across the content. You may feel tempted to do it for getting quick results in terms of search rankings. But this approach will certainly do more harm than good and actually invite a penalty from Google. The best thing to do would be to ensure a healthy balance so that your anchor text portfolio is natural as possible.
Use optimal anchor text ratios
Another SEO best practice that you cannot ignore while creating anchor texts for your backlinks is using them in optimal ratios. Rather than using only exact match keywords, stick to variations such as keyword-match, naked URL and branded anchor texts. You can go through Anchor Text Ratios & Best Practices For Faster Rankings to understand how you can actually decide the right mix for getting optimal results. Following these rules ensures a natural link profile that gets you sure results within the shortest time span.
Stick to keyword-rich anchor texts
While you should adhere to Google guidelines related to anchor text ratios, sticking to keyword-rich anchor texts to ensure SEO-friendliness. Avoid using generic ones such as ‘Click Here’ or ‘View This’. Using relevant and meaningful words and phrases would rather get you the desired results because they are easy for the users and search engines to identify.
Be selective about the site you link with
When it comes to creating anchor text for external links, sticking to the best practices alone will not do the trick. You also need to be selective about the site you link with because the relevance of the backlink is as important as the SEO-friendliness of the anchor text. You may be adhering to all the best practices for creating SEO-friendly anchor texts for your backlinks but don’t expect results if you are connecting with spammy and irrelevant websites. All the good work will end up wasted just because Google will definitely not like the choice of the website you link to.
Test and track
While you need to be extra smart for building the best backlinks with well-optimized anchor text, you should also be willing to keep an eye on them. Testing and tracking your current assets is important so that you can do away with your mistakes and strengthen your profile. There are several tools, both free and paid, that you can use to analyze your backlink profile and detect the loopholes in terms of over-optimization of anchor text. On detecting links with such issues, you can go ahead and disavow them to curb the problem of over-optimization of anchor text.
Anchor texts are vital for creating a search engine optimization strategy that actually gets you tangible results for your website. Undoubtedly, they need extra attention because flouting the rules can expose you to Google’s wrath in the form of penalty. This is the last thing that you would want to happen because it could spell doom for months and years of good work. The ranking that you may have achieved with significant efforts may witness a sudden dip and your website may never gain footing again. Ensuring that you follow the best practices for building quality backlinks with SEO-friendly anchor texts is, therefore, the smartest thing to do.